Sunday, February 24, 2008

"The Hug"

Hoosiers gut out win in Evanston Inside the Hall An Indiana basketball blog
For you Hoosier fans out there, I hope that you had an opportunity to see Dan Dakich's on-court post-game interview with Shon Morris of the Big Ten Network.
After Dakich gave an emotional but very thoughtful interview, crediting coach Sampson for building an outstanding team, DJ White grabbed Dakich and gave him a big hug.
We've been reading about how distraught the team has been (understandably) at losing the leader of their "Second family." And rumors that the players favored having assistant coach Ray McCallum take over the team instead of Dakich. DJ's wordless "Statement" sent a huge message that this team is still together, and that Dakich is their recognized NEW leader. Let's hope that this team can pick up the pieces from the Sampson debacle (which, while it may have reached the right decision, the University bungled horribly) and move on to dominate the Big Ten and the NCAA tournament.

Monday, February 11, 2008

The Matthews Family Meets the Shrine Circus

We all went to the Shrine Circus on Sunday night. It was a wonderful time; the smiles of delight on the girls' faces were priceless. Avery's favorite were the tigers and lion; she was amazed by the tigers jumping through the ring of fire. Ellie's favorite (and mine) were the trapeze artists. I am always amazed by that display of talent. Amy and I were wondering how much these incredible artists are paid; we were guessing not very much.

At right, Ellie and Avery had the singular experience of riding an elephant during the intermission. Think it's easy to tell that they are having fun!

Friday, February 1, 2008

ABC News: Whole Foods: A Whole New Approach to Employees' Health Coverage

ABC News: Whole Foods: A Whole New Approach to Employees' Health Coverage
This is a great article about Health Savings Accounts. I have been on a plan like this for the last 3 years, and think that it is the best thing since sliced bread. A lot of people (and employers) are fearful about "high deductible health plans." And why wouldn't they be, with that name?
But we have reached a point that people need to be personally engaged in the health decisions they make - and that means sharing in the understanding of financing health. And smart companies (mine included) are softening the blow by doing things like contributing to employees' HSAs (this is YOUR MONEY!) and covering preventive care at 100% (annual physicals, mammograms, etc.).
In the past 3 years, I have not spent a single dollar "out of pocket" on health care for my family - including prescriptions. Yes, I contribute to this HSA every month. But it comes out of my paycheck on a pre-tax basis, and it goes along with an incredibly low premium - which means that I only pay for the healthcare that I use. With conventional plans, if I don't use the healthcare system much, I am actually overpaying. With an HSA, any money I don't use is MINE, and is growing (still on a pretax basis) in my HSA investment account.
If your employer offers a plan like this, you need to do the math . . . put an excel sheet together. Chances are you're going to see an opportunity to save a lot of money. And if your employer DOESN'T offer an HDHP with a Health Savings Account, you should be insisting that they do. Yes, I work for a health insurance company - but I wouldn't say it here if I didn't really believe it.